Tuesday, March 29, 2005

I need a designer to make a desk!

As I said, this hollidays were also about home improvements... basically, painting that wall. But it also involved finding new furniture... my desk it's to big to fit on the living room, so I'm using the "credenza" which is not an ergonomic solution.

So, today we went shopping for a nice computer desk. I had in mind something like the one Hermas had at his office. (maybe not that one, but something similar) In fact, I remember I saw them at office depot... when my students were researching existing products to design their own desks.

Anyway, we went to several furniture stores, from "the warehouse" to "freedom", and even NZ's office depot... and couldn't find the right desk... either they are very cheap chinese copies at a very unreasonable price, considering they are not really high quality, or they are cheap chinese mass products, low quality, etc... at a very unreasonable price again!!! I mean, the "low quality" ones are 100 to $200... when a reasonable price for that kind of junk, may be just half of that. The resellers are doing a great business... maybe I should become a retailer instead of breaking my head trying to get my studio going!!!

Anyway, the "not so baaaad quality, but anyway chinese mass produced, that look like bad photocopies of ikea products" cost more than $500... reasonable? maybe for a company, not for someone that just wants a nice computer desk to put at his/her house. That's why workstations "warehouse style" are best sellers. I can't understand why consumers still pay for that kind junk. Probably they haven't heard about demand/offer...

Most prices here in New Zealand are like that, not based on actual production costs, etc. but they are based on how much or "up to how much" consumers are willing to pay. There are $50 and $100 steps on most prices:

People are willing to pay up to 50 dollars for a pan, a folding chair, or a lamp, so they are all 49.99

What people consider reasonable for a micro audio system, a power tool, a toaster, a vacuum cleaner and an office chair is 200, so they all are 199.99 in most stores, regardless of brand, quality, or functions.

Now, many will pay up to 500 for a cell phone or a digital camera, so, they all are 499.99

How much would you pay for a fridge? for a DVD player? a washmachine? a dryer? a sofa? a TV (not plasma: regular, normal, plain tv)? Believe it or not, it doesn't matter how much technology is on a product, or how much are the materials worth... they all sell for 999.99 (just look at Noel Leeming's ads on the Tv) That is how much people are willing to pay! Not how much is the real market value (price) of those products.

Back to the desks issue... if consumers pay without hesitation, retailers will be bringing the same junk, and will even try to bring each time something worst and worst, as long as the clients still pay. It's just sad, to think that many good designed furniture will not be as successful as they should, simply because retailers inflate their prices, and thus, causing that the target market for which they were designed for, will not be reached. Those consumers will have to settle for a "warehouse" version of what they had in mind. And the higher segments will also recieve something that was intended for a middle class. In spanish we call that "gato por liebre" (being sold a cat instead of a rabit).

After today's frustration, I couldn't find a decent desk at the right price. It's a shame that office depot (U.S.) doesn't ship internationally or it would cost a fortune to pay the delivery.

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Same look

well, now it was time to adjust this blog to have a similar look to my web site. It is not so easy to work only with code, not a visual editor, but the new xhtml code is quite straightforward.

Not only my virtual world got a makeover... I painted one of the walls of the apartment to have a colour accent (terracota). More or less like we had in Monterrey. It really gives our living room a "house" sensation... really, like someone lives here!

I also used this hollidays to change my routine, and get some time to read. I haven't finished yet (just some chapters left for tomorrow), but I manged to read "la piel del cielo" (heaven's skin) by Elena Poniatowska. Very nice novel but the first third lacks some relevance to the whole point of the story. In my opinion it was not necessary to describe so many details about Lorenzo's childhood. However, it is always nice to read Poniatowska's description of mexican lifestyle.

I will comment on how I share some of Lorenzo's struggles later on.

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Sunday, March 27, 2005

Hard drive

Well... you are right, maybe we're getting old. Do you remember when I used to have Ofra Haza and Bauhaus as "hard drive"... well, now it's birth of the cool constantly playing. Sometimes when I get tired, I change it for kind of blue... sigh!

Want to check out a game where you have absolutely no idea of what to do:


Took me almost until the start of "darn that dream" to figure out what to do.

Speaking of games, I updated the first page to include some instructions. I'll work during the week on the pictures page.

This weekend on NZ-sky tv: terminator 1 & 2... plus clueless and alien... =(

Not much to see, so Sandra and I decided to look at our old home videos. 97 & 98 in Guadalajara, the "tamagatchis", etc. Oh! good old times.
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Tuesday, March 22, 2005

User Centered Design

Well, I had to learn flash to renovate my site. It was the first time I used it. But I was not so happy with the main page (index) so, I decided to put there a game. I was already "playing" with the idea of making my own flash game... so I used a template to make my game.

The idea is to match some products with the potential customers. For example Avril Lavigne may be interested in buying an iPod, or Paris Hilton on buying some Dior shoes... etc. After a few days of trial and error, it seems that at least the first level is working... not bad when you have no idea of actionscripts and those things! he!

You will find the game later on my site.

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Friday, March 18, 2005


Well, finally the renovation of my web site is (almost) done. At least the pages are running with the new look. I still have to work on the pictures and put some captions on each flash... but it's finally running.! =)

I am just dissapointed that I validated my files as html 4... but the scripts from geocities failed the validator. Anyway, it's time to enjoy the weekend.
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Thursday, March 17, 2005

Empty room

Well, it's a weird sensation when you enter a new empty house... the rooms are full of possibilities, and there are many things to be put on the walls. Actually, this is more like a new guest house on the garden... I've been renovating my home site, and this was part of the plans for the new look.

Anyway, it will take a while until the whole house feels warm and cozy... I'll try to put more into this guest room, I'll just have to make it part of my routine. Sure I want my guest to feel welcome, if you don't mind the cardboard boxes.
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